The Power of Our Collective Imagination

Photo by Clever Visuals on Unsplash

It was not until I read the fascinating book Sapiens by Yuval Noah Harari that I was hit with the sometimes unfathomable realization that most things in human society are a figment of our collective imagination.

This realization was both mind-boggling to me but always freeing.

As Steve Jobs put:

“Life can be much broader once you discover one simple fact: Everything around you that you call life was made up by people that were no smarter than you and you can change it, you can influence it, you can build your own things that other people can use.

Once you learn that, you’ll never be the same again.”

Some of the biggest items that impact our life every day were simply thought up one day by a human and over time became a part of our collective imagination…crazy!

Some examples include:

  1. Money- What is money? It is a future promise right? You give me a dozen eggs and I will give you this paper that you can later trade in for something of approximately the same value. At the end of the day it is simply paper, or numbers in a bank terminal, or now transactions on a blockchain ledger. You may argue that you need money to survive…but do you really? When was the last time you used money to keep you warm? I mean the actual physical money. When was the last time you used money to avoid hunger? Did you eat some Benjamin Franklins recently? I doubt it. Money is only valuable because we all agree that it is valuable. (This is also why crypto has huge upside it will take a while for all of our collective imaginations to believe in it but when we do it will have value just as any other medium of money currently does).

Overall I learned that humans are fundamentally driven to connect with one another through a belief in something whether real or fabricated.

All of these five items seem totally normal to us today but at one time they were probably totally absurd.

Therefore it is best to realize that nothing in the human race is absurd. Sure it might take a few generations for an idea to catch on but ultimately most of our life’s are lived in make believe land anyway.

So keep dreaming and keep seeking to improve the world. No idea is too crazy!

23. Expressing my thoughts and ideas.

23. Expressing my thoughts and ideas.